Lockheed Martin: F-35 milestones

F-35 Enterprise Delivers 400th F-35 and Fleet Surpasses 200,000 Flight Hours

The F-35 enterprise has delivered the 400th production aircraft, and in the same week, the F-35 global fleet surpassed 200,000 flight hours. These significant milestones demonstrate the program’s strong progress and growing maturity. Please feel free to use the below talking points with your customers, stakeholders and employees as appropriate – and here are links to the supporting news release and video.

F-35 Enterprise Achieves Significant Milestones

The F-35 fleet has achieved 200,000 flight hours across global operations, a significant milestone demonstrating the program’s progress and continuing maturity.

Within the same week, Lockheed Martin also delivered the 400th production F-35.

These milestones are a testament to the joint government, military and industry team designing, building, sustaining, maintaining, operating and flying F-35s around the globe.

The 200,000 flight hours includes all F-35s in the fleet comprised of developmental test jets, training, operational, U.S. and international aircraft. Among the three variants, approximately 125,850 hours were flown by the F-35A, 52,410 hours by the F-35B and 22,630 by the F-35C.

The 400th production aircraft is AF-198, an F-35A for the U.S. Air Force that will be delivered to Hill Air Force Base, Utah. The first 400 production F-35s include 283 F-35A conventional takeoff and landing (CTOL) variants, 87 F-35B short takeoff/vertical landing (STOVL) variants, and 30 F-35C carrier (CV) variants and have been delivered to U.S. and international customers.

Milestone Demonstrating Program Maturity

To date, 400 F-35s have been delivered and are now operating from 17 bases worldwide. More than 800 pilots and over 7,500 maintainers are trained. Ten nations are flying the F-35, eight countries have F-35s operating from bases on their home soil, seven services have declared Initial Operating Capability, and three services have announced their F-35s have been used in combat operations.

The enterprise is on track to deliver 131 aircraft to the warfighter this year, up 40 percent from last year.

The F-35 program is expected to complete Initial Operational Test and Evaluation (IOT&E) this year and officially transition from the System Development and Demonstration phase and into a focus on full rate production, operational sustainment and modernization.

By 2023, about 1,000 aircraft will be operating from over 40 bases and ships. In less than six years, we’ll deliver and integrate more than 600 more aircraft into global operations, while supporting the stand up of about 25 additional bases and ships – all while enhancing overall readiness and reducing costs.

Reducing Cost and Enhancing Readiness

We’ve reduced the F-35 cost by more than 60 percent since the initial production contract and the F-35A is now $89.2 million. We remain on track to deliver a unit cost of $80 million by 2020, which is equal to or less than legacy fighters.

The F-35’s reliability and readiness continues to improve and newer production aircraft are averaging greater than 60 percent mission capable rates with some operational squadrons consistently near 70 percent.

Additionally, Pentagon leaders recently shared that the latest annual sustainment contract delivered a 10 percent negotiated cost reduction per flight hour compared to 2018.

In partnership with our U.S. and International customers, our goal is to reach 80 percent mission capable rates and reduce the Cost Per Flight Hour (CPFH) to $25,000 by 2025, which is comparable to the cost to sustain legacy aircraft, while providing a generational leap in capability. We fully support those goals and are investing, partnering and taking action to achieve these targets.